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Pedestal Bowl with Lid

Asian Art

On View: Asian Galleries, South, 2nd floor
This pedestal bowl was most likely a mortuary vessel made to be placed in the tomb. In life, this type of vessel would have been used for warming food. Hot coals would have been placed under the vessel through the piercings in the base. The lid lifts off and turns upside down to become another bowl, with its central knob serving as the bowl’s foot.

The designs on this stoneware bowl are similar to ones on bronze artifacts. The bird footprint motif filling the space between the perforations might allude to the bird as a conveyance for the soul of the deceased to the afterlife.
MEDIUM Stoneware
  • Place Made: Korea
  • DATES 5th century
    DYNASTY Silla Dynasty
    PERIOD Three Kingdoms Period (Silla)
    DIMENSIONS 7 7/8 x 5 1/2 in. (20 x 14 cm) Diameter at lid: 5 1/2 x 2 3/4 in. (7 x 14 cm) Diameter at base: 5 7/8 x 5 1/2 in. (15 x 14 cm)  (show scale)
    ACCESSION NUMBER 40.519a-b
    CREDIT LINE Gift of Sir George Sanson
    CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION From "Korean Art Collection in the Brooklyn Museum" catalogue: This grayish-blue stoneware was made with fine clay, and shows traces of a surface finishing technique that utilized a potter's wheel. A basin-shaped circular knob forms the handle of the cover. Fine horizontal lines divide both the bowl and the lid of the vessel into two areas, containing bird footprint motifs and triangles filled with parallel lines. The vessel stand is also divided into two areas by a horizontal band. Each of the two areas is decorated with four alternating rectangular perforations, with bird footprint motifs filling in the space between perforations. The stand flares out gently to form a round protruding edge, which is then inset to form the base. Accession card: Mortuary food vessel (tazza shape) with cover. High stem foot, wide shoulders and mouth grooved to receive a cover. The cover is domed with a hollow knob on top. The foot is hollow and cut out in eight rectangular portions in two tiers. This is the most characteristic vessel type among Silla burial pottery. The lid lifts off and turns upside down to become another bowl, its central knob serving as the bowl's foot. This vessel at the Brooklyn Museum is unusual in having its original lid and also in having bold incised designs on its surface. Coarse, gritty, slate gray pottery, unglazed. Rings from the potter's wheel are clearly evident. Traces of earth still adhering. Condition: Mouth chipped.
    MUSEUM LOCATION This item is on view in Asian Galleries, South, 2nd floor
    CAPTION Pedestal Bowl with Lid, 5th century. Stoneware, 7 7/8 x 5 1/2 in. (20 x 14 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Sir George Sanson, 40.519a-b. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: , 40.519a-b_PS11.jpg)
    IMAGE overall, 40.519a-b_PS11.jpg., 2017
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    RIGHTS STATEMENT Creative Commons-BY
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